Crystal Reports is an application used to design and create reports. It can gather and process data from a wide range of sources and can turn it into useful information. The application is a product of SAP AG, and is mostly popular in small organizations. Not only can the application gather data from a variety of sources, it can also deploy reports through .Net, HTML, and Visual Basic. A Crystal Reports tutorial generally teaches small business owners and their employees how to develop reports so that they can be useful in the decision making process.
In this blog post, we will discuss the features of this application, why you should learn it, what can be accomplished through it, and what parts should a good Crystal Reports Tutorial cover
Crystal Reports Features
Crystal reports has built in features that allow users to design reports easily. The features include pre-built templates, ready-to-use data drivers, and flexible charting capabilities. The application is compatible with popular business software suites such as Microsoft Office. The dashboard and reports can be embedded in presentations to add value to them. The tools also empower the user to create visualizations with the help of charts and graphs. You can also build interactive dashboard using Crystal Reports.
The best feature of Crystal Reports and the main reason of its popularity is that it can extract data from all major types of data sources. From spreadsheets to large databases, the application can consolidate data from multiple sources into reports and dashboards. You can browse through data, sort it, filter it, explore the generated reports, and share the reports through the internet or through a secure server.
Finally, one of the most important features of Crystal Reports is that it can generate ‘what if’ scenarios. After going through a Crystal Reports tutorial online, an advanced user can easily create model reports to visualize what would happen if certain business decisions are made. In short, it is the ideal software application to have at your workplace if you do not have enough resources to buy large scale business software suites.
Why Learn Crystal Reports
Consider this scenario. You are the owner of a small organization and have a limited budget. You do have the basic IT infrastructure at your workplace, i.e. computers and an internet connection, but you do not have enough resources to buy and implement an ERP. With every transaction you make and every operation that takes place in your organization, useful data is generated and just sits there in spreadsheets. In this scenario, wouldn’t it be great if there was a cost effective way to utilize that data, and to use it to make business decisions?
We bet most of you agree that the data being gathered at an organization is a knowledge resource that cannot be neglected. Such data can be used to find out your strengths and weaknesses, to indicate inefficiencies and flaws in operations, to identify patterns, and to make calculated predictions.
However, you cannot sort, filter, and process such data and turn it into useful reports with the help of a spreadsheet. If the data is in large quantities, you need a way to turn it into useful information efficiently and effectively. That is where Crystal Reports can really help you out.
What You Can Accomplish Through Crystal Reports
Anyone with a working knowledge of computer can learn how to use Crystal Reports, and can start gathering data and turning it into useful information. The point and click features on Crystal Reports, the easy to understand interface, and the visual clarity of the generated reports all make this application a must have for your office.
Any report or visualization created through Crystal Reports can easily be incorporated in an MS Office presentation, and you can email the reports to your business partners, suppliers, distributors, etc. With the help of visualizations and predictive models, you can see what will happen as a result of business decisions you are about to make. While you should not entirely depend on Crystal Reports for your decision making process, having predictive models and past reports at hand will help you make educated and informed decisions.
What You Should Learn in Crystal Reports Tutorial
When taking an online Crystal Reports course, you should focus on learning how to design reports from the first step. You should learn to extract data from spreadsheets and how to connect to Oracle databases, Access databases, and SQL servers. You should learn how to sort, filter, and group data, and you should learn how to customize reports with business logic.
A thorough Crystal Reports tutorial will teach you how to write a basic report, how to format it, how to connect to remote data sources, and how to highlight important information. With the help of Crystal Reports, you can merge data from multiple tables and create business queries; you can also embed sub-reports into reports, and can add all types of visuals. After you learn how to accomplish such tasks, you can move towards learning more complex tasks such as deploying Crystal Reports to different formats, publishing reports online, and integrating Crystal Reports with custom applications.
For a small business owner, Crystal Reports can make the decision making process more effective and efficient. You can make informed decisions and can gain a competitive advantage over others if you use this application correctly. For someone in the market for a job, learning Crystal Reports adds an important skill to your resume, a skill that other candidates may not have. Crystal Reports is a useful business application, and is a must have for anyone who has a reasonable collection of useful data.
We hope this blog post helped you gain a basic understanding of Crystal Reports and why you should try a Crystal Reports Tutorial. Feel free to contact us if you have any questions or comments, we will love to hear what you have to say.